Thursday 22 March 2018

Coillte profits up on construction recovery

Fergal Leamy, Coillte chief executive
Fergal Leamy, Coillte chief executive
Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

Profits rose sharply at Coillte last year, as the state forestry company thrived on a rebound in the construction sector.

In the year to the end of 2014, the semi-State reported pre-tax profits which rose 48pc to €44.4m on turnover which climbed marginally to €298m.

Coillte provides timber to the construction industry and suffered during the downturn. With the industry on the up however, Coillte's new chief executive, Fergal Leamy, said the turnaround in that business had been striking. There is "strong demand" for the company's products now, he said.

"We are encouraged by the strong demand we are seeing globally for the products we produce, we expect this demand to increase in the next few years with stronger demand from construction and growing bioenergy needs.

"In parallel we are maximising the value of each forest hectare we own by developing an exciting renewable energy portfolio which will provide electricity needs for approx. 210,000 homes within the next five years".

Mr Leamy has started a strategic review of the business, which should be concluded by November.

Irish Independent

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